FEATURE ARTICLE

Friday, February 9, 2024
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Belgium
A HIGHLY DETERMINED/ - MOTIVATED SUPER EAGLES OF NIGERIA, FLY PAST THE "BAFANA-BAFANA" OF SOUTH- AFRICA, ON THE EPIC ROAD TO THE AFCON 2023 FINAL MATCH!

Nigeria’s forward #9 Victor Osimhen (C) and teammates celebrate the victory at the end of the Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2024 semi-final football match between Nigeria and South Africa at the Stade de la Paix in Bouake on February 7, 2024. (Photo by Issouf SANOGO / AFP)

he Super Eagles showed guts/determination in the semi-final cracker against the "Bafana-Bafana" of South-Africa. It went the whole log, before the highly determined / - motivated Super Eagles could have the last laugh!

It was a nerve- pulsating semi-final cracker, that was as thrilling as it was scary, for the Super Eagles supporters.

Now let's examine the technical/tactical aspects of it:

The Super Eagles lined-out in their usual formation, which was the 3-4-3 in concept, but was actually a 3-5-2 in execution!

Coach Peseiro apparently tweaked his original 3-4-3 formation, to provide centre-forward Victor Osimhen, with a decent measure of partnership upfront and that way somewhat reduce his workload, and increase the striking/scoring possibilities for the Super Eagles, by having a "twin strikers' partnership", confronting the opponents in their vital area! This strategy with benefit of hindsight was partially successful.

Coach Peseiro, fielded goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali. He once again proved himself as the best Nigerian goalkeeper presently. And has made Nigerians forget the "goalkeeping nightmares" of the recent past! Apart from successfully wading off the South-Africans during the regular encounter, he produced two brilliant penalty saves that rightly earned him the accolade of "Man-of-the match"! Kudos to him and the entire team.

Three centre-backs were:

Semi Ajayi, alias "The gentleman giant"; Stand-in Skipper William Troost-Ekong , alias "Rock of Gibralter" and " The Kwinkling-tinkling" Calvin Bassey.

The wingbacks were:

" The dazzling" Bright Osayi-Samuel and " The usually brilliant" Ola Aina, who was switched to the left-wing back position, to accomodate for the absence of Zaidu Sanusi.

The central mid-fielders were :

Frank "The tank" Onyeaka; Alex Iwobi, alias "The dancing krekel" and Ademola Lookman, who had a more offensive orientation as mid-fielder.

Victor Osimhen, alias "El Magnifico", was the centre-forward and was supported by Simon Moses, alias "The Atilogwu dancer".

The Super Eagles generally had a subdued first half performance. But raised their game a notch in the second stanza; with the mercurial Victor Osimhen, waking up from his slumber; and causing the opponent's defence problems. His daring dribbling run against three defenders, resulted in the penalty call , after he was brought down in the opponent's vital area.

Stand-in Skipper William Troost-Ekong, took up responsibilty beautifully and shot the Super Eagles into the lead.

With about ten minutes left in regulation time, a quick counter-attack from Nigeria, saw Victor Osimhen score an apparent second goal; to apparently seal victory for Nigeria. But a VAR intercession indicated an infringement committed by a Nigerian player, in the Super Eagles' vital area against a South-African player, prior to the counter-attack by Nigeria.

Thus Nigeria went from 'heaven' to 'hell', by not only having the second goal cancelled, but also conceding a penalty kick to the opponents. And the concomitant 1-1 score line, at the end of regulation time.

The extra-time of thirty minutes, failed to brake the dead-lock.

In the ensuing penalty series, the Super Eagles , under impuls of goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali, showed calmness and resoluteness to do their nation proud. And they did!

UP SUPER EAGLES OF NIGERIA!!!!

The substitutes were : Alhassan Yusuf; Samuel Chukwueze, alias " El Fantastico"; "The highly dynamic " Joe Aribo; Kelechi Iheanacho alias " Senior man" ; Terem Morfi and "Field marshal " Kenneth Omeruo.

In conclusion:

The Super Eagles have deservedly qualified for the final of the " 2023 AFCON tournament"! Kudos to the team and their handlers!

UP SUPER EAGLES ! UP NIGERIA !!!!!!!!!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/1976765951/ref=sr_1_7…

and "Super Eagles of Nigeria in the New Era", also presently on sale on www. Amazon.com

https://www.amazon.com/Super-Eagles-Nigeria-New-Era/dp/B09P7MGP4P/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1641064306&sr=8-1

Also at the link below, one can come into contact with a number of items, needed to support the Super Eagles at "COTE D' IVOIRE 2023" !!!!!

https://teespring.com/stores/super-eagles-of-nigeria

The book "Super Eagles of Nigeria : Pride of Africa" and "Super Eagles of Nigeria in the New Era" can also be gotten through me using my e-mail address as contact point. [email protected]

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